Antlion – an insect of the night

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This Spotted-winged antlion is an exciting nocturnal find.

They're large (about 3 cm or 1-1/8 in), yet dainty like a damselfly of the night. Adults are said to live 3-6 weeks, and there is debate as to whether or not they feed. This shot is from August 2022 when we were visited 3 times in a week by probably the same individual. Before this, we had single visits in 2016 and 2019.

Antlions are named for their ferocious larvae (like the related Fishfly). While antlion larvae are renowned for digging pits in the sandy ground that trap prey, this rarely seen larvae species lives in dry tree holes and logs. I like this more artsy shot to highlight its wings. It's Dendroleon obsoletus.